Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu, the former deputy public works minister has voiced her displeasure regarding the government’s inter-ministerial report on President Jacob Zuma’s Nkandla dwelling, claiming that she and former public works minister Geoff Doidge have been wrongfully implicated in the scandal.
Both Bogopane-Zulu and Doidge held the positions in 2009 when the security upgrades were first commissioned and for this reason, according to a report which was published earlier this week, the pair are to be investigated.
Bogopane-Zulu told the Sunday Times she felt “annoyed and irritated” at the suggestion that she was involved in nefarious acts regarding the upgrades made to Zuma’s homestead.
“I was never interviewed or asked anything,” she reported, “logic says when you do an investigation and people are mentioned in a report, you give them an opportunity [to respond]”
The former deputy public works minister told the paper she has not yet seen the report. “None of the ministers spoke to me … so the authority to put my name in the report – I don’t know what informed that.”
In light of the situation, neither Doidge nor Bogopane-Zulu are opposing the investigation.
“I’m told the report is recommending that I be investigated by the Special Investigation Unit and the auditor-general, so let them investigate and report.” Doidge told the Sunday Times.
In spite of being in the middle of many security issues, Public Works Minister, Thulas Nxesi has undertaken complete responsibility for “the project”. In a press conference held on Thursday, Nxesi said President Zuma neither requested the upgrades to his house nor was he told of the costs of the project.
“President Zuma did not ask for security installations. As per normal procedure, SAPS [South African Police Services] and department of defence conducted a security assessment as per their mandate,” Nxesi reported.
Public protector, Thuli Madonsela, has interviewed Bogopane-Zulu and Doidge and is expected to compile and issue a separate report soon.